"In the backyard of the [Royal Academy of Fine Arts] school was this little building, on the verge of collapsing. You would have to very carefully go over the stairs, because if you took one mis-step, you could literally push your feet through them. It was almost dangerous. So I think that the whole thing melted well together. It was the switch from the 80s to 90s, the reaction on excess with minimalism and deconstruction, the first appearance of grunge. So that feeling of romanticism, together with the history, the building and the run down corridors with the statues, it really did make a big impact on how you formed your visual language. I really think there was something quite dark and magical about it, matching perfectly the zeitgeist of the period."

— Willy Vanderperre
Martin Margiela spring / summer 1994
Martin Margiela commissioned an abandoned movie theater to show not only his clothes, but how they were made–from such things as plastic shopping bags, old leather coats and denim jeans, which were nailed on a wall and coated with gray paint. And, at the same time the sort of clothes people wear on the high street or pick up in the flea market and turns them into fashion by mixing and changing the shapes and fabrics. In the process, he challanges conventional ideas of what fashion can be, showing us new ways of wearing familiar items. At a time when designers are reinventing the Wheel over and over again, hish approach is a genuine breath of fresh air. Models wore plastic dresses, jackets with ripped sleeves and oversized men’s trousers.

Martin Margiela spring / summer 1994

Martin Margiela commissioned an abandoned movie theater to show not only his clothes, but how they were madefrom such things as plastic shopping bags, old leather coats and denim jeans, which were nailed on a wall and coated with gray paint. And, at the same time the sort of clothes people wear on the high street or pick up in the flea market and turns them into fashion by mixing and changing the shapes and fabrics. In the process, he challanges conventional ideas of what fashion can be, showing us new ways of wearing familiar items. At a time when designers are reinventing the Wheel over and over again, hish approach is a genuine breath of fresh air. Models wore plastic dresses, jackets with ripped sleeves and oversized men’s trousers.


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